SCARBOROUGH — There is almost no separation between the Gorham Rams and Scarborough Red Storm.

And that makes for some palpitating volleyball when the rivals square off.

Less than two weeks after the Red Storm rallied from two sets down to shock host Gorham, Scarborough came from behind again to force a decisive fifth set on Tuesday evening at Alumni Gymnasium, but this time the Rams refused to buckle.

Gorham closed the final set on an 8-4 run and senior setter Sophia DiPhillippo’s 32nd assist set up classmate Meryk Lewellen’s 13th kill to give the Rams a 3-2 victory by scores of 22-25, 25-21, 25-21, 24-26 and 15-12.

“Scarborough always keeps their heads up,” said Gorham Coach Emma Tirrell. “They keep their spirit light and can always put the ball away. I appreciate them for what they are and they push us to get better.”

The Red Storm (4-2) went on a 6-0 run midway through the first set and went on to victory, as setter Olivia Smith had seven assists and Natalie Moynihan produced three kills, including the decisive point.


The Rams (4-2) never trailed in the second game, going up 6-0, 10-2 and 12-3 and while Scarborough drew as close as 22-20, a pair of kills from Summer Gammon helped close it out.

In the third set, the Red Storm rallied from down 17-14 and led, 21-19, on a kill from Alana Sawyer, but the final six points went to Gorham, highlighted by a pair of blocks from Lewellen.

Scarborough responded after falling behind 10-3 early in the fourth, but a service fault gave Gorham a 24-23 advantage and match point. But the Rams failed to return the ball, Moynihan served up an ace and Olivia Ingream came off the bench and extended the match to the limit with a kill.

“The girls truly play until the ball hits the floor and we have a hungry group,” said Nicole Petherbridge, Scarborough’s first-year coach.

A Moynihan ace gave the Red Storm an 8-6 lead in the final set, but Gorham saved its best for last. After a kill from Amber Bretton, a pair of Scarborough service faults got the Rams to match point. From there, DiPhilippo set up Lewellen to clinch it.

“The ball was right where I wanted it,” said Lewellen. “I’m so glad (Sophia) set it to me and I knew I was going to get the kill.”


“Winning here (last year in the semifinals) gave us confidence,” added DiPhilippo. “We communicated and I think we just wanted it more.”

Smith (37 assists) and Moynihan (17 kills, six aces) sparked the Red Storm’s effort.

“We’re pretty evenly matched,” said Petherbridge. “We know their strengths and they know ours. It was back-and-forth the whole time. We both made adjustments on the fly.

“They got the better of us this time, but we’d love to see them again.”

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